Read Green Infrastructure Ontario Coalition’s Report of the Urban Forest in the Greater Toronto Area

June 22, 2016 at 3:55 pm

Green Infrastructure Ontario Coalition Report Urban Forest in GTA

We recently returned from our first Grey to Green Conference in Toronto at Ryerson University, presented by Green Roofs for Healthy Cities (GRHC), where Green Infrastructure Ontario Coalition‘s Report of the Urban Forest in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) was released.

The Green Infrastructure Ontario Coalition (GIO) is a collaborative alliance of not-for-profits organizations, community groups, businesses and local governments, including GIO steering committee member Green Roofs for Healthy Cities, working to sustain green infrastructure across Ontario.  Their mission is to bring organizations together to share information and collaborate for improved green infrastructure policies and programs across the province.

“We’re thrilled to release this report, which represents the collective efforts of 17 local and regional governments. Together, they have established baseline data which will be critical to managing the urban forest into the future. Most importantly, they all used the same protocol, which allowed us to compile it into this GTA-wide report.” ~  Janet McKay, Chair of Green Infrastructure Ontario Coalition


Green Infrastructure Ontario Coalition Report Urban Forest in GTA

85% of trees in the GTA are small compared to only 40% in a healthy urban forest.

Summary of main findings:

  • 34.2 million trees provide 26% canopy cover in the GTA;
  • Replacement cost of these trees and shrubs is $14.2 billion;
  • $70 million is the estimated value of the 2.7 million tons of carbon stored;
  • $36.5 million is the estimate annual value of air quality improvements;
  • $20 million is the estimated annual value of energy savings;
  • 113,000 tons of carbon is removed every year – this is equivalent to the emissions of 23,000 passenger vehicles;
  • 4,000 tons of pollution removed from the air annually (including 2,300 tons of ground level ozone);
  • 10% of tree population is Ash (3.2 million trees). We have already lost a large number of them to EAB;
  • 54% of trees are made up of four species (Maple, Cedar, Ash, and Buckthorn);
  • 85% of trees are small (diameter less than 22.9 cm);
  • 37% of trees are on residential property, 18% on commercial industrial, 25% on open space, agriculture and natural area, and 20% on institutional, transportation and other;
  • The underlying studies were conducted between 2005 and 2014.

Read the Executive Summary and the Full Report.

Green Infrastructure Ontario Coalition Report Urban Forest in GTA

It’s an important landmark tool for folks committed to improving green infrastructure in the Ontario area, and certainly serves as a wonderful resource for the rest of us.

Getting back to the 4th Annual Grey to Green, in addition to seeing great presentations and panels on green infrastructure and climate change and visiting the Trade Show, we had a fantastic time and must give kudos to everyone at GRHC and their collaborators who put together another impressive conference!

Green Infrastructure Ontario Coalition Report Urban Forest in GTA

We mingled with old friends and acquaintances such as the ever-lovely: Virginia Russell from the University of Cincinnati (and her lively mother!), Tracy Jackson from GRHC, Hamid Karimi with the DC Department of Energy and Environment, David Yocca of Conservation Design Forum, Kirtin Weeks of Arup, Sara Loveland and Ashleigh Uiska (whom we hadn’t seen in years because she has been in the UK having some beautiful babies!) of Annette Environmental, and of course Steven Peck and his better half, the wonderful Joyce McLean – among many, many, more.  We also met some great new ones, too, including Kara Orr, the new Marketing Coordinator with GRHC and Chaoyue Zhao, GRHC’s Conference & Training Coordinator, whom we finally got to meet face to face.

Green Infrastructure Ontario Coalition Report Urban Forest in GTA

Green Infrastructure Ontario Coalition Report Urban Forest in GTA

Green Infrastructure Ontario Coalition Report Urban Forest in GTA

Green Infrastructure Ontario Coalition Report Urban Forest in GTA

Hopefully, we’ll get to see more of our living architecture colleagues at future green infrastructure conferences and catch up on what’s happening in your neck of the woods!

~ Happy reading,

Linda S. Velazquez, ASLA, LEEP AP, GRP Publisher

The 2010 Winner of our Yearly Premium Listing from Vancouver, B.C. is…

December 8, 2010 at 8:20 pm has been an exhibitor at the annual Green Roofs for Healthy Cities conference for 8 years in a row now – from the first Greening Rooftops for Sustainable Communities in Chicago  in 2003  to this year’s CitiesAlive! Green Roof & Green Wall Conference  in beautiful Vancouver, B.C.   And each year we’ve held a drawing for a free Premium Listing in The Greenroof Directory.   How are people eligible?   You just have to  come by and visit our booth and drop off your business card – super easy!

We are pleased to announce that Anjuli Velazquez, host of our “This Week in Review“ video (also our daughter and mother of almost 2-year old Nicholas), pulled out the following company for our FREE one year Premium Listing in The Greenroof Directory, a $599 value:

Congratulations to annette environmental inc.!   Headed up by two very competent and talented individuals who have been working in this industry for a few years now, we learned this is a new venture for them and that the consulting company  will have two headquarters – Washington, D.C. and Toronto.   You may remember Sara Loveland, formerly with D.C. Greenworks, and Ashleigh Uiska, formerly with  Fishburn Building Sciences Group Inc.  (and previously Green Roofs for Healthy Cities).   We expect great things from this pair of  strong and lively women!   If you want to learn more about them, please  visit The Greenroof Directory in a few days when we’ll have all the information needed to create their full page color brochure.

By the way, if you were a CitiesAlive! conference exhibitor or attendee, we are extending our 20% offer to  you  until December 17th for any advertising opportunity that we have on – visit  Advertise  for all the options, from being listed in The Greenroof Directory to Banner Advertising to Sponsorship.
Look for some upcoming coverage of the CitiesAlive! Green Roof & Green Wall Conference from a  contributing editor and guest writer and more…I promise to report on this successful Vancouver, B.C. conference with lots of photos of people and places – after I catch up with the  International Skyrise Greenery Conference in Singapore and the WGIN World Green Roof Congress in Mexico City – up next!   Here are some photos of Vancouver for now:



We hope you enjoyed the Green Roofs for Healthy Cities conference, and look forward to seeing you again next year when it will be held in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania!

Happy greening ~ Linda V.